This is one of those threads where I just shake my head.
I get to read things like:
"But the majority of these businesses don't use the net. Why? Well unless they're web savvy, how are they to find a piece of information or find a possible supplier without using a search engine? They can't."
*** Are you serious? Do you really, truly believe that businesses can't find information or suppliers without searching the Internet? That there are no other ways to find information? That businesses are ignorant and without other resources? My goodness...how could they possibly have survived before the Internet!! (Much less thrived.)
"Representing all the retail businesses in your market is key. If you offer them technical and management tips, classifieds, forums and links to their suppliers, that will keep them coming back every day. The suppliers will, in turn, want to take full advantage of the "target market" opening you will supply."
*** Do you truly believe that businesses can't function successfully without your website or one like it? That it never crossed their minds to bookmark their suppliers' websites...or have their darn phone numbers in their Rolodex...or simply memorized? That all those brick and mortar business owners are going to spend their time on forums? That they are going to check your regional directory "every day" to see what you have to offer? (As if no one running a brick and mortar business has a clue how to run a business without those technical and management tips offered by a webmaster.)
Come on, folks. Get real.
The Internet has a role to play. It's not the entire production.